Sky reporter praised by Man United fans for breaking down Glazer ownership on live TV

Sky Sports journalist Kaveh Solhekol has received praise from Manchester United supporters after he analyzed the Glazer family’s ownership of the club in an eye-opening segment on live television.

The Glazer family took control of United in 2005 with more than £500m of debt.

In the following years, many urged the owners to sell up. Indeed, before their opening day defeat to Brighton on Sunday afternoon, thousands of fans staged a protest against the ownership as they made their way to Old Trafford.

After the full-time whistle, former United right-back Gary Neville asked the Glazers to leave.

“The time has come for the Glazer family to sell the football club,” he told Sky Sports. “It is now. They’re the easiest team to play against in the league – that’s a huge concern.”

United have signed Christian Eriksen, Lisandro Martinez and Tyrell Malacia in the summer transfer window to try to revitalize the squad under new management.

And in some transfer business that has raised many eyebrows over the recruitment process, Adrien Rabiot and Marko Arnautovic have been earmarked as potential additions.

But despite the appointment of Erik ten Hag, and the three new signings, there are still doubts about United’s ownership.

Earlier this week, Sky Sports reporter Kaveh Solhekol made some stinging comments about the Glazer ownership that have gone viral online.

He began: “Talking about that show [2-1 loss vs Brighton] and where United are at the moment, you can’t get away from the ownership issue,” Solhekol said.

“I have said this before and I will continue to say it… under the current owners this is what United are going to be. Because the way they bought the club and the way they loaded the club with debt and the way the club has to pay off the debt means that United are going to fall further and further behind very well run clubs like Manchester City, Liverpool, PSG, Chelsea… where you have owners who deposit money, not owners who withdraw money.

“Fifteen years ago the Glazer family borrowed £600m to buy Manchester United. Fifteen years on, that debt is still £600m and it has been loaded onto the club.”

Manchester United majority owner Avram Glazer in the stands during Sunday's Premier League game against Brighton.  Image credit: Alamy
Manchester United majority owner Avram Glazer in the stands during Sunday’s Premier League game against Brighton. Image credit: Alamy

Solhekol added: “The takeover has ended up costing Manchester United somewhere between £1.5bn and £2bn. It’s money that’s gone out of the club, so it’s no surprise Manchester United are in the state they’re in.

“Yes, for a while when Sir Alex Ferguson was in charge, he almost took the loss through the cracks. He made United winners. They won the Premier League title and the Champions League.

“But in the long term, what you saw yesterday is a direct result of the ownership model at Manchester United.

“This ownership model would no longer be allowed in English football. It is not allowed in American football. You cannot have leveraged buyouts. But unfortunately Manchester United are tired of it.”

Image credit: Alamy
Image credit: Alamy

After a short pause, he added: “Just to go back to this ownership issue, you look at Chelsea, they’ve got new owners. Chelsea was put up for sale. Raine Group, the investment bank in New York, they had more than 100 parties who was interested in buying Chelsea.

“Eventually the Todd Boehly consortium bought the club for something like £3bn. And look at what Todd Boehly is doing at Chelsea, signing Raheem Sterling and [Kalidou] Koulibaly, goes for [Wesley] Fofana…that’s the type of player Manchester United should be signing.

“There are people out there who want to buy Premier League clubs, who have the money to buy Premier League clubs.

“Until this debt issue is sorted, I don’t think Manchester United will ever get back to the level they were at before the Glazers arrived. Clubs like Manchester City, PSG, Liverpool are now light years – light years! – ahead of Manchester United.

“Look at the league table last season, City finished 35 points above Manchester United, they are almost in another league.

“You look at the way City operate. How many years will it take for United to overtake City again? I’m not sure it will happen unless there is a chance in the ownership structure because the money taken out of Manchester United is why that they are in the condition they are in today.”

Here are Solhekol’s comments in full:

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